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Ride-snare: Lyft ruse helps cops cuff suspect in tech CEO murder case

'How would you rate your ride?'

By Richard Chirgwin, 28 Jun 2017

A police officer in Fayette County, Georgia, has nabbed a murder suspect by appropriating the Lyft vehicle he figured the perp hoped to use as a getaway car.

Albert DeMagnus, CEO of an IT business named Computer Management Services, was stabbed to death during a June 23 home invasion. He was discovered by his wife, whereupon three armed attackers demanded cash and valuables.

Two of the alleged perps then left the scene in the family's Lexus. Local media reports that the Fayett Sheriff's Office police thought the third left in the car that the three drove to the home.

According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the two in the Lexus led police on a chase reaching 130 miles per hour (nearly 210 km/h for metric readers), before crashing and fleeing on foot.

One of those two decided the best way to outpace the police was to get new wheels, and called a Lyft to pick him up.

But by then police had established a perimeter around the suspects and the Lyft driver stopped at one of the checkpoints. County sheriff Barry Babb then twigged that the car might be for one of the suspects.

His car happened to be the same model and colour as the Lyft, so he got the driver to reveal the pickup address and with three officers headed for the rendezvous.

Babb told the Journal-Constitution that “The subject walked all the way up, was about to open the door and get in our vehicle, when we exited and identified ourself as the sheriff’s office”.

After a 100-yard chase, the suspect was arrested.

Two men have now been charged over the crime – Jeffrey Lee Wallace, 22, of Atlanta, and Kavion Wyzeenski Tookes, 21, of Decatur – and police are still searching for the third suspect, who they believe has left the county. ®

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